Sunday 6 July 2014

A Breeze of Fresh Air

The last few months have taught us something about WWE and their developmental system. No matter how over somebody might be in NXT it’s always worth considering making a few tweaks to characters before transferring them to RAW.

Adam Rose, who’d been in NXT for a matter of weeks before it was announced he was moving to the main roster, is a good example of why this should be. In the smaller, more intimate confines of the NXT Arena (more commonly known as Full Sail University) he could be presented as a star. It helped that the crowd there was comprised mostly of regulars who’d get into the spirit of the character. In a more open arena the character doesn’t have the same feel and without regulars in the crowd every week he’s struggled to gain support.

A bit of forethought and this could have been avoided. WWE could have looked at the different setups and crowds RAW and NXT have and altered the presentation of Rose accordingly. I’m not writing him off. I still think he’s capable of doing well. It’s just that it’s taking longer than I suspect WWE wanted it to, and certainly longer than it needed to.

One of the best things about NXT.
One guy I don’t think this will happen to is Tyler Breeze. In ‘Prince Pretty’ there’s a perfectly rounded heel act that’s ready to be called up to the main roster as is. He has distinctive ring gear, a distice gimmick, and a distinctive promo style. The selfie taking, the announcement that he’s arrived in the building, and his introduction from various seasonal residences are all simple things that help to set him apart too.

The chief obstacle Breeze will have to overcome is not having a nondescript gimmick but a lack of size. ‘The King of Cuteville’ is one of the smallest men under contract to WWE and the promotion is well known for being reluctant to get behind guys who won’t attract attention in an airport. But while this is Breeze’s main obstacle it’s not an insurmountable one. Nor is it one I think he’s incapable of overcoming.

His character more than balances his less-than-monstrous proportions and he understands how to make his character connect with audiences. If he’s given a significant storyline upon being called up I’m confident he’ll make the impact that’s needed for wrestlers to carve a niche on the main roster. The question of how high he can go up the card is practically irrelevant at this point: that’s so reliant on WWE taking a shine to someone at present that even obvious main event guys like Dolph Ziggler are being left floundering.

I have one criticism regarding Breeze. Why, when he broke his finger, did WWE respond by downplaying it and booking him in short matches? The perfect way around a broken digit for ‘The Gorgeous One’ would be to put a hand cast on him and have him announce he’s been tapped for some hand modelling. That would write him out of storylines and be in keeping with his character. But even with that opportunity missed Breeze is ready for the call-up.

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